London 2012 Begins

They’ve started, and wasn’t the opening ceremony amazing? My favourite part was the Queen whisking off with James Bond and elbowing him out of the way to parachute into the stadium. If y missed it, here’s your chance to see it again. uk-19018666
The Queen is due at the Olympic Stadium shortly. She has some stamina. I was very tired at the end of the Opening Ceremony, and had a late start this morning and I’m not eighty-six.

Another Day in Parliament

The MPs may be on their summer hols, but that doesn’t mean the Palace of Westminster is quiet. The summer opening brings visitors from all around the globe.
This Saturday I shall be one of the Blue Badge Guides taking groups on guided tours of the building, following the Line of Route from the Victoria Tower through the Lords and the Commons and ending in Westminster Hall.
Parliament is an impressive building inside and out.
The Speaker has apartments in the clock tower. The current Speaker has a young family, and from Westminster Bridge you can just see a glimpse of the children’s playhouse in the garden.

Speaker’s Garden

Denmark Hill and Camberwell Walk

This Sunday at 2.30 in the afternoon I’ll be leading a guided walk around Denmark Hill and Camberwell. It’s a public walk, so everyone is welcome to come along. It costs £9 per adult, £7 for over 65s and full-time students. Meet me outside Denmark Hill Station. I’ll have a clutch of London Walks leaflets with me.

Of course Camberwell had its few minutes of fame the other week when Camberwell Grove was featured on BBC’s The Secret History of Our Streets. If you missed it, click here, the programme is still available on BBC iplayer for the next few days.

Mendelssohn used to come to Camberwell, though he didn’t stay in Camberwell Grove. You may recognise this piece he composed during one of his visits.

Its original title was Camberwell Green. As Michael Caine, whose name also crops up on this walk, might say, not many people know that.

Parade of Shops, Manor Place SE17

Nice Brickwork


Nice brickwork huh? Quite fancy. The sort of thing I’d like on my house. You may recognise it if you have been on my Walworth walk as it is a building I draw people’s attention to. In the lifetime I have spent in Sunny Walworth I have become fond of it.
Unfortunately, it is part of a terrace that is boarded up.

Boarded Up

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Farewell Event Hidden Borough

You may have seen the blue doors unfurling on empty buildings around the place. They are the signature of Hidden Borough, the project of the Guerrilla Architects who have been staying in a cold warehouse in Great Suffolk Street Se1 for the last few weeks.

Now they are moving on. Or maybe I should say back. They are returning to Berlin.

No Place Like Home

Invitations have been issued for a farewell event tomorrow at 55 Great Suffolk Street. It starts at 7pm and they are promising architecture, music, art and performance.

Entrance by ladder only.